For most women, having a baby is one of the most amazing experiences of their lives. However, the experiences of pregnancy, childbirth, and breastfeeding also come with significant physical changes that can negatively impact a woman’s self-esteem and satisfaction with her appearance. Because a pregnant woman’s growing belly stretches out the skin and muscles in the abdomen, many women experience stretch marks and sagging skin that remain long after the “baby weight” has come on. Stubborn fat, sagging breast tissue, and other cosmetic changes can make a woman feel self-conscious, especially after several children. For women who are unhappy with these changes, there is a solution for rejuvenating the body and reversing some pregnancy-related changes: a mommy makeover at Premier Image Cosmetic Surgery in Atlanta. Dr. Kristin Boehm offers custom procedures to help moms get their body back to look and feel their best.
What is a Mommy Makeover?
The term “mommy makeover” actually refers to a combination of cosmetic surgical procedures that help women regain their pre-pregnancy bodies. Mommy makeover procedures are completely customized to individual patients’ needs, since there are many different ways the body can change during and after pregnancy. With that said, most women who undergo a mommy makeover after having children choose to reshape the breast and belly areas, as these areas are most likely to change significantly during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Tummy tuck, breast lift, breast augmentation, and liposuction are all common procedures for mommy makeovers.
Benefits of a Mommy Makeover
Women who choose a mommy makeover typically do so to feel more comfortable and confident in their own bodies. Many women want to regain some of their pre-motherhood identity and feel more comfortable wearing garments like swimsuits, shorts, and tank tops. It is often impossible for women to regain their pre-pregnancy body with just diet and exercise, due to the stretching and hormonal changes that take place throughout the process. A mommy makeover can be a great solution to these frustrations, and women who go through this custom procedure can gain a sculpted silhouette they feel great about.
Procedures like a tummy tuck and breast lift can remove excess skin and stubborn fat for a more youthful, lifted, and toned appearance. A tummy tuck can also tighten the abdominal muscles, which often become separated and stretched during pregnancy when the baby grows larger and presses up against them. Some women choose to enhance their natural appearance further by restoring the appearance of their breasts with a breast lift and breast implants. The advantage of the mommy makeover is that it bundles several effective procedures together and allows moms to undergo just one surgery and one recovery period for comprehensive body contouring, reducing discomfort, cost, and time.
*Each patient is unique and individual results may vary.
Who is a Candidate?
Good candidates for a mommy makeover are nonsmoking women in general good health who have had at least one child. Patients should ideally be done having children and breastfeeding before the procedure, as becoming pregnant or continuing to breastfeed can create additional changes in the body that compromise results. Women should wait at least two to three months after they are done breastfeeding before scheduling a mommy makeover procedure, to allow the breasts to settle into their final size and shape. Patients should also be at a stable post-pregnancy weight (within around 10% of goal weight) and be fully healed from any childbirth-related surgeries, such as a c-section. These precautions will optimize safety and results, and help to ensure long-lasting results from the surgery.
Candidates should have realistic expectations for the procedure. While it’s not possible to restore the body to exactly what it was before pregnancy, it is possible to make some incredible improvements. Before and after photos are a great resource for getting familiar with what is possible from a mommy makeover procedure.
If you’re not sure if you are a good candidate, don’t worry: you will be able to get a definitive answer about your candidacy when you attend your initial private consultation with Dr. Kristin Boehm.
The Mommy Makeover Consultation
Before a mommy makeover procedure can take place, it is extremely important that prospective patients attend a consultation with our body expert, Dr. Kristin Boehm, at Premier Image Cosmetic Surgery in Atlanta.
During this consultation, patients share their goals with the surgeon, who will perform an examination and recommend procedures that will help the patient achieve those mommy makeover goals. A thorough review of the patient’s medical history, including any past surgeries, health conditions, and medications will take place. This will allow the surgeon to ensure the patient is healthy enough for a safe and successful surgery.
Finally, the surgeon will answer any questions the patient may have. The consultation process is designed to give patients the tools to make an informed decision about their treatment, and to begin the planning process.
Mommy Makeover Procedures at Premier Image
Because every mommy makeover procedure is different and fully customized to the patient, the surgery itself will vary. However, many patients opt for breast and tummy sculpting, which typically require the use of general anesthesia. Most patients will be fully asleep during the procedure, and will not feel any pain. Prior to the procedure, the surgeon may mark areas of the body in ink, to guide the surgical team through the surgery.
Once anesthesia has been administered, incisions will be made. For a tummy tuck, a long incision extending from hip to hip is common. Through this incision, the surgeon will remove stubborn fat pockets, trim and tighten excess skin, and tighten underlying abdominal muscles that may have separated during pregnancy. Breast procedures may involve one of several incision patterns, depending on how extensive the lifting and reshaping will be. Incisions will be hidden whenever possible. The surgeon will lift, trim, and tighten the skin and breast tissue during a breast lift, and may also place silicone or saline breast implants, depending on the patient’s treatment plan.
Liposuction or other surgeries may also be performed during the procedure. Once all the patient’s concerns have been addressed, the incisions will be closed and dressed, and drains will be placed if necessary. Most patients should expect to spend about an hour or so in recovery before they can be driven home by a family member or friend.
Recovery after Mommy Makeover
Because all the procedures are bundled together into one surgery, the mommy makeover cuts down on recovery time for the individual surgeries drastically. However, it is an invasive procedure requiring several weeks of downtime. Patients should have someone prepared to help them with everyday tasks and caring for their children during the first few weeks of recovery.
During the first few days, rest and relaxation is key. Patients should follow their surgeon’s instructions closely, taking prescribed pain medication to control discomfort and caring for the incisions as instructed. Typically, compression garments must be worn for several weeks. It is very important not to do any lifting, bending, or strenuous activity during the first few weeks. Most patients can return to work and other activities within about 2-8 weeks following surgery, depending on the activity.
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Mommy Makeover FAQs
What are the risks of a mommy makeover?
As with any surgery, there are some risks associated with mommy makeover procedures. However, choosing a safety-focused plastic surgeon and following all pre and post-operative instructions greatly reduces the risk.
Some risks and complications of a mommy makeover can include bleeding, infection, unfavorable scarring, and anesthesia complications. Healthy patients who are honest about their health history and follow all instructions typically do not experience serious complications.
How old should my children be before I have the surgery?
You can have a mommy makeover at any time after you are done having children. Many moms worry about having the surgery while their children are still young, but it is often a great time to do so, as you’ll feel better about yourself sooner, and you’ll be able to recover before your children get more active. There is never a perfect time to put your life on pause and choosing when to get a mommy makeover is a very personal decision that should take into account your individual circumstances and feelings.
Will there be scarring?
All surgery produces some scarring. Cosmetic surgeons take care to camouflage scars whenever possible, and will ensure that no scars are visible when clothing is worn. Some scars may be visible underneath clothing, but even some of these can be hidden in the creases of the body or will fade significantly over time. Additionally, mommy makeovers that include a tummy tuck can often fold an existing c-section scar into the tummy tuck incision, reducing the amount of visible scarring.
What if I get pregnant again after my surgery?
It is not dangerous to get pregnant after a mommy makeover. However, subsequent pregnancies will have an impact on the results of the procedure, and may undo the benefits gained during the mommy makeover. It is for this reason that patients are advised to wait until they are done having children before pursuing the surgery.
Can I still breastfeed after a mommy makeover?
Many women can still breastfeed after a breast enhancement procedure. With that said, it is not a guarantee. Occasionally, the surgery can affect the ability to breastfeed. In addition, breastfeeding changes the appearance of the breasts quite a bit. For this reason, it is best to wait until you are done breastfeeding for several months to get a mommy makeover.
How can I make sure I get the best results possible from my surgery?
Ensuring that you choose an expert surgeon and follow his or her instructions to the letter is the best way to optimize your mommy makeover results. You should also make sure to eat a healthy diet and drink plenty of water during your recovery to help facilitate healing.
Will a breast lift change my cup size?
While the breast lift may remove some tissue and lift the breasts to a higher position, it typically does not change the patient’s original cup size. The breasts may appear smaller, because they are firmer and tighter, but the actual change in tissue volume should be minimal. Patients who want extra volume may want to consider breast augmentation with a breast lift.
How long is the surgery?
Each surgery is different, but most mommy makeover procedures last about four to five hours in the operating room on average. This is due to the extensive nature of the surgery.
When can I pick up my kids after surgery?
Bending and lifting can have serious consequences for a woman recovering from a mommy makeover. You may need to wait up to six weeks to begin picking up your children to ensure you do not injure yourself or compromise your results.
What are the exercise restrictions after a mommy makeover?
Strenuous exercise should be restricted for several weeks after your surgery. Your surgeon will give you a specific timeframe, but you’ll probably need to wait at least 4-6 weeks before resuming strenuous activities, sex, and exercise.
Get Your Body Back
If you’re interested in getting your body back with a mommy makeover, it’s very important to choose a qualified, board-certified plastic surgeon to perform your procedure. This will help ensure a safe procedure and beautiful results. Our team at Premier Image Cosmetic Surgery can help you get the results you dream of at our Atlanta, GA office. Call 770-457-6303 today to schedule your mommy makeover consultation!